MANY Rugby League (R.L.) fans will probably be at least vaguely familiar with the story of the game's origins: in 1895 at a meeting at the George Hotel in Huddersfield, 22 clubs broke away from the Rugby Football Union (R.F.U.) over arguments about 'broken-time' payments and formed the Northern Rugby Football Union (N.U.); similar arguments in Australia led to the formation of the New South Wales Rugby League (N.S.W.R.L.) in 1907; over the subsequent decades, changes to the laws of the game, enacted by the N.U. and the N.S.W.R.L. evolved a distinctive form of rugby football, known throughout the world from 1922 by its Australian title: Rugby League. However, possibly fewer fans will be aware of precisely why the broken-time debate could not be resolved, or why the breakaway bodies felt compelled to change the laws of the game to such an extent. In Rugby's Great Split, Tony Collins (currently, the official R.L. archivist) provides answers to these questions which should be of interest to R.L. supporters throughout the world.
?I?M ready,? I said, speaking with the simplicity of a great star who had somehow managed to retain the common touch. As I glided along in my BMW 3 Series coupe, I had never felt more like a Roosters Supporter in my life. The Latte drinking BMW driving ?rich bitch? tag was certainly an image I could handle.
QUEENSLAND fullback Darren Lockyer has failed to complete today's training session on the Gold Coast.
QUEENSLAND halves Shaun Berrigan and Ben Ikin want to redeem themselves after sharing the bulk of the blame for the opening State of Origin loss.
NEW South Wales skipper Andrew Johns says he's ready to better his sterling performance in State of Origin I and wrap up the series against Queensland next Wednesday night at Telstra Stadium.
THE two Seagulls teams remain on top of the Queensland Cup ladder after 13 rounds with Tweed in most danger of being toppled this weekend.
Wynnum Seagulls kick off the weekend with the ABC televised clash against Central Comets at Kougari Oval and Wynnum should win against a team that has won just four times in 13 starts this season.
Admittedly one of those wins was against Tweed Seagulls at their citadel at Piggabeen, but it is hard to imagine a repeat performance this weekend.
Central are coming off a one point loss to Norths in Rockhampton with Norths Kiwi halfback, Marty Turner proving the difference with a field goal.
Norths play Tweed in a ?Big Sunday? of football this weekend and a top crowd should be on hand at Bishop Park particularly as the Broncos have a bye.
Also on Sunday Ipswich host Redcliffe at Bendigo Bank Oval, the 2002 grand finalists coming together for what should be a torrid match particularly as both sides have lost their last two clashes.
In the other Sunday match Burleigh Bears play Wests at Pizzey Park, Miami with Wests chasing their first win of the season.
If Burleigh win as expected it will take them to 19 points, putting them ahead of either Redcliffe or Ipswich who also go into this round on 17 points.
We have not forgotten about the other two Saturday matches. The first is at Langlands Park at 3pm between the Easts Tigers and Souths Logan Magpies and Easts (12) should keep in touch with the top five by toppling the Magpies.
At 6pm at Stadium Toowoomba the Clydesdales play the North Queensland Young Guns in what shapes as the best match of the weekend.
Toowoomba are in clear second place on 19 points, one behind Wynnum and Tweed Heads.
North Queensland are seventh, three points outside the top five, but they have a terrific for and against and except for bad luck would be much higher up the ladder.
Best wishes to the XXXX Queensland State of Origin team as they try to square the series in Sydney on Wednesday night.
The curtain-raiser is the inter-state under 17 clash and our young Maroons will be looking to gain revenge for last year?s loss at this level.
Also on Wednesday the Queensland under 15 Schoolboys side will play NSW at Moree.
Next Thursday an Australian Rugby League Board meeting will be held in Sydney. Keep an eye out in next Friday?s edition of The Courier-Mail for details of the meeting.
Don?t forget Radio TAB (1008 on the dial) has regular league segments, including those devoted to the Queensland Cup, on Mark Forbes? Breakfast Show between 6am and 8.30am Monday to Friday.
Former Wests and Redcliffe forward, Rob ?Bertie? Campbell looks after the Queensland Cup while The Courier-Mail?s Steve Ricketts has a segment on Wednesday and Friday at 7.10am.
THE NSWRL Premier League hots up again this weekend with some very interesting games.
THE County of Origin reverts to one game in 2003, with Yorkshire hosting Lancashire at the Bulls' Odsal Stadium, Bradford. The game will be played on Wednesday 2 July, with an 7.45pm kick off.
ST Helens and Hull FC got back to winning ways with victories over Halifax and Castleford Tigers on Friday night, while Leeds Rhinos remain at the top of the Tetley's Rugby Super League table following a 48-12 defeat of Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.
Saints had picked up just three points from their last six games, but were comfortable 58-2 winners against the basement side Halifax at Knowsley Road.
KIWI league player Anthony Seuseu has parted company with relegation-threatened Super League club Halifax after both parties came to mutual agreement.
PAUL Cullen has named his squad for the Round 15 clash with local rivals Widnes Vikings this Sunday at the Halton Stadium.
THE St George Illawarra Dragons have comfortably defeated the South Sydney Rabbitohs 34-20 in a strong second half performance at WIN Stadium this evening.
THE Manly Sea Eagles bet the Cronulla sharks 36-18 in an enthused performance at Brookvale Oval.
ST George-Illawarra maintains there is no animosity with former Kiwis captain Quentin Pongia who leaves the National Rugby League (NRL) for England after just two matches.
THE Parramatta Eels have beaten the North Queensland Cowboys 24-22 with a try in the dying moments to David Veaeliki.